Sat, 27 Dec 2008 11:05:11 GMT
A study reveals that the direct cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan could reach as high as $1.7 trillion by 2018 even with fewer troops in Iraq.
The Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) also reported that the Bush White House has 'fudged the war's true costs' by borrowing rather than funding the wars through the appropriations process.
The report also criticized the Bush administration's paying for the wars through borrowing, rather than tax increases and spending cuts.
It added that this approach would lead to interest costs through 2018 that range from about $70 billion to as high as about $700 billion, depending on how much of the war funding came through bond sales.
Steven Kosiak, a defense budget expert and author of the study said, "If you want to go to war… we should probably pay for more of that war upfront rather than borrowing for it," because the public feels more of the war's real burden through tax increases and spending cuts.
This is while the study does not include potentially hundreds of billions more in indirect economic and social costs, such as higher oil prices and lost wages.
The CSBA report found that the war in Iraq alone has already cost more in inflation-adjusted dollars than every other US war except World War II.
The cost of sending a single soldier to fight for a year in Afghanistan or Iraq is about $775,000 - three times more than in other recent wars, the report said.
The report concluded that the nearly $1 trillion already spent is only a down payment on the war's long-term costs.
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In: Iraq, Afghanistan, Middle East
Tags: Report:, Bush, fudged, true, US, war, costs, ,
Location: Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq (load item map)
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